15th January 2016

We need to jettison inherited prejudices and wrong notions – Wigneswaran

15th January 2016 // 0 Comments

Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran says that an inclusive society cannot be built upon counter-terrorism mindset and state security perspectives and that a heavy military presence in the province lays the foundation for violence. Addressing the National Thaipongal Festival in Jaffna today, he said that the 16th goal of the UN’s 2013 agenda for sustainable development calls for the promotion of peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective accountable and inclusive institutions to all levels. “This is indeed what we Tamils of this country are interested in,” he said. The Chief Minister said the 16th goal firstly says that we need to reduce all forms of violence. “Unfortunately we in the North do not enjoy […]

Time for Action on Sri Lanka War Crimes

15th January 2016 // 0 Comments

Just how committed is the Sri Lankan government to implementing the UNHRC resolution? On October 31, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and International Committee of the Red Cross President Peter Maurer jointly warned the international community about the impact of current conflicts on civilians, and appealed for urgent and concrete actions, including unhindered access and protection for humanitarian personnel, facilities and supplies, internally displaced people and refugees, and the end of the use of heavy weapons in populated areas. The two also called for condemnation and effective investigations to hold the perpetrators accountable. Especially poignant was Ban’s comment. “In the face of blatant inhumanity, the world has responded with disturbing paralysis. This flouts the very raison d’être of the UN.” The joint warning is reminiscent of efforts […]

UN supervised referendum for Eelam Tamils sought

15th January 2016 // 0 Comments

A group of diaspora organisations are to seek a UN supervised referendum for Eelam Tamils to express their political aspirations. The Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam, the International Council of Eelam Tamils and the International Tamil Youth Organisation have in a joint statement noted that Tamils the world over continue to breathe the thoughts and dreams of a free Tamil Eelam. The joint statement said: “We have entered the 40th year since the people of Tamil Eelam proclaimed to the world their deeply held political aspirations through the Vaddukoddai Resolution in 1976, based on the principles of homeland, nationhood and the right to self-determination. The essence of the Resolution declared on 14 May 1976 under the leadership of the late S.J.V Chelvanayagam was the enunciation by Tamils […]

Nandy assures Sri Lanka continued support of UN

15th January 2016 // 0 Comments

Outgoing UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Sri Lanka Subinay Nandy reaffirmed the commitment of the United Nations to the Government of Sri Lanka in continuing to progressively work together for the benefit of the Sri Lankan people. In February, Nandy, will take up his new post as Head of Asia-Pacific Division of the Department of Political Affairs in UN New York Headquarters. Nandy, concluded his assignment in Sri Lanka after a 4 year and 8 month term and called on President Maithripala Sirisena for an exit meeting, the UN office in Colombo said today. At the meeting, President Sirisena noted key priorities of the Government and reiterated the need to work together in addressing such challenges. (Colombo Gazette)

Ex-UNP minister backs TNA’s call for MR’s role in constitution making

15th January 2016 // 0 Comments

By Shamindra Ferdinando Former UNP Minister A.R.M. Munsoor yesterday urged the government as well as former President Mahinda Rajapaksa to heed Tamil National Alliance (TNA) leader R. Sampanthan’s call for the former SLFP leader to join the constitution making process. The success of the process would largely depend on the participation of all political parties and groups represented in parliament, Munsoor said, adding that the required consensus could never be achieved unless the former President threw his weight behind the project. The one-time Commerce Minister told The Island that the support of those UPFA members still loyal to the Kurunegala District MP could be secured through the active involvement of Mahinda Rajapaksa in the process of writing a new Constitution. Whatever the criticism of his […]

Several Tamil parties condemn black flag protest against Maithri and Ranil

15th January 2016 // 0 Comments

By Jehan Haniff Several Tamil Political parties strongly condemned the Northern Provincial Council (NPC) member M. K. Sivajilingam for staging a Black Flag campaign in Jaffna in protest against President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe visiting Jaffna to take part in the National Thai Pongal celebrations today. Although they said the protest was an “utter flop,” Sivajilingam told The Island the protest had been a huge success with several prominent personalities taking part in it. A leader of a Tamil political party, contacted by this newspaper, said though Sivajilingam was a prominent member of the Tamil Ealam Liberation Organisation (TELO), he hadn’t had the blessings of the party hierarchy for his protest. Sivajilingam said his black flag campaign was aimed at registering protest […]

Police Brutality Continues: AHRC

15th January 2016 // 0 Comments

“It is the people’s security that is being threatened by actions such as the one that took place in Embilipitiya. People’s security is also being threatened at almost every police station, every day, when the police brutally assault people under the guise of conducting criminal investigations”, says the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC). Issuing a statement the AHRC said; “The Government has announced another attempt at constitution making in Sri Lanka which, this time is to begin, with the hope to complete the process, by the end of this year. A resolution to this effect has already been introduced in the Parliament and a Drafting Committee has been named. A valid question that begets asking is; what, does a constitution making in Sri Lanka imply? Some […]